Darren Sharper returns to New Orleans, pleads not guilty to charges for drug conspiracy; but for now it's just a formality _lowres

Former NFL safety Darren Sharper appears in Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday, March 23, 2015. Sharper was sentenced to nine years in federal prison Monday immediately after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a woman in Arizona, marking the first change of plea of the day for the former safety accused of drugging and assaulting women in four states. (AP Photo/Nick Ut, Pool)

Former Saints safety Darren Sharper — who already has pleaded guilty in drugging and rape cases against him in California, Nevada and Arizona — has been transferred to St. Tammany Parish’s jail as he prepares to enter pleas next week in similar state and federal cases in New Orleans, U.S. Marshal Genny May said Wednesday.

Sharper, 39, is due Monday in New Orleans’ federal court, where he is charged with giving the drugs marketed as Ambien, Xanax and Valium to women with the intention of raping them. The allegations date back as far as January 2010.

He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Criminal District Court, where the state has charged him with three counts of aggravated rape.

A source with knowledge of the situation said Sharper, who helped the Saints win their lone Super Bowl title in February 2010, has agreed to plead guilty in state court to reduced charges: two counts of forcible rape and another of simple rape stemming from a pair of incidents in 2013. It is expected he also will plead guilty in federal court.

Those pleas form part of a wide-ranging settlement Sharper and his attorneys reached with authorities in the four states where he has been charged with drugging and raping women.

Under the agreement, Sharper will serve nine more years in prison on top of the one year he has spent behind bars since his Jan. 17, 2014, arrest in Los Angeles.

His deal with Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office technically mandates a 20-year sentence on his Louisiana charges, but he will have to serve only half that amount under the terms of the global settlement, a source has said.

Sharper has two co-defendants in state court: Erik Nunez and former St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy Brandon Licciardi.

Nunez and Licciardi — each accused of aggravated rape — have pleaded not guilty.

Licciardi also is charged in federal court alongside Sharper. He has pleaded not guilty in that case as well.

In New Orleans, authorities charged Sharper with raping two women at his condo on Tchoupitoulas Street on Sept. 23, 2013. He was charged with the simple rape of another woman at the Renaissance Hotel on Aug. 31, 2013.

Sharper was subsequently accused of drugging and raping several more women in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Tempe, Arizona, before police arrested him.